ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. - The Tampa Bay Rays will announce Ybor City as their preferred relocation site at a Friday afternoon press conference, opening the door for negotiations regarding financial subsidies, 10News has learned.
The announcement is centered around the unveiling of "Tampa Bay Rays 2020," which promotes itself as a "broad-based community effort" to move the team to Tampa. Chuck Sykes, CEO of Sykes Enterprises, Tampa Mayor Bob Buckhorn and Rays' Principal Owner Stuart Sternberg are scheduled to speak during the event, which will take place at 1:30 p.m. inside the Tampa Baseball Museum.
If the effort includes tax dollars, then there may be challenges ahead: Hillsborough commissioners have taken an anti-tax stance regarding funding a new stadium.
The announcement came as no surprise to officials in St. Petersburg, where the Rays' Tropicana Field is currently located.
"The easy part is picking a site," Mayor Rick Kriseman said during a Thursday afternoon city council meeting. "Now is when the real work begins and the time that the Rays and the officials in Hillsborough and Tampa have to do the hard work of figuring out the rest. There's still a lot of questions they need to get answers to. A lot of those questions don't exist regarding our site because our site is a known entity."
The Rays have declined comment to 10News on the potential relocation.
10Investigates' Noah Pransky has reported extensively on the Rays' relocation effort:
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